Midtown - 23rd and Union

Seattle, WA
A locally-led project including affordable housing, market-rate apartments, retail, and a large public square at 23rd and Union.
Developer
residential
280 Apartments
retail
25,000 SF
affordable housing
250 Apartments
PUBLIC SQUARE

Comments are closed on this project

How can the public square celebrate the Central District's history and diversity?

Annual ethnic festivals; ethnic restaurants and clothing shops; locals showcasing and selling their art, etc.

13 supporters

Thanks, LaVerne! We're really interested in this too. Do you have any recommendations on specific groups that we should reach out to and try to partner with?

1 supporter

The James Washington Foundation. 206-709-4242, Esther Ervin, LaVerne Hall or James Kelly

Will do! We're looking forward to continuing our work to bring restore the fountain and will provide an update once the restoration is complete.

3 supporters

What kinds of activities would you be most likely to enjoy in the public square?

Seasonal outdoor markets!

10 supporters

Maybe draw some inspiration from Night Market in the International District. With the right lighting and some rain cover you can do a lot more than just summer months.

11 supporters

Hi John - Totally agree. We're working on figuring out some options for rain cover. Thanks.

1 supporter

I also agree about attractive lighting. In the winter it’s dark by 5 pm. If there were a covered outdoor space with heat lamps and attractive lighting & a few restaurants, I think it would be a huge draw.

5 supporters

How can the public square celebrate the Central District's history and diversity?

Art/murals by artists of color. POC owned businesses.

9 supporters

What else do you suggest to make the square an enjoyable and meaningful community gathering spot?

Access or permeability is key -- and it seems that the design already prioritizes this. I think the major failing of most Seattle designs is lack of protected outdoor space, or even transitional space... Read more

9 supporters

Hey Ric - agreed on the permeability, that has been a focus for us in the design. And we're working on the design to incorporate as many natural elements as possible. We'd like to figure out a way to provide... Read more

2 supporters

How else would you describe the best retail choice for the square?

It'd be awesome to have all of the choices available for the square (restaurant, clothing, co-work spaces, etc..) but of course I realize that space is limited. Ideally the space will be full of multiple... Read more

9 supporters

Hi Patrick - We want to get as many options as possible, but we are limited by space. We're aiming to have at least 5 or 6 retailers, although that number may change as we work through the community feedback... Read more

What else do you suggest to make the square an enjoyable and meaningful community gathering spot?

Plenty of plants and really good landscape architecture, fountains that kids can play in on hot days. Make it feel like nature, bring in some native evergreen trees.

8 supporters

How would you describe the kinds of activities that would bring you to the square?

I really love the court yard up in chop house row. There is lovely green space and shops are tucked in there. I feel like I step away from the city and just feel so at peace when I am back there. I routinely... Read more

8 supporters

How can the public square celebrate the Central District's history and diversity?

Minority owned retail, celebrations, etc

7 supporters

Hey Jaclyn - Yep, minority owned retail is important to us. If you have any specific small businesses you'd like to recommend or want to introduce to us, please send them our way. Thanks.

How else would you describe the best retail choice for the square?

Really want to keep service amenities such as a post office and laundry facility. A book store would be great!

7 supporters

Yeah, a restaurant would be great, but we really need to keep a mix of day-to-day services if at all possible, as well.

2 supporters

How can the public square celebrate the Central District's history and diversity?

This neighborhood has a rich and vibrant history. African American, Sephardic and Ashkenazic Jews, Italian, Chinese, Japanese immigrants. The red line brought many people together. Maybe there can be some... Read more

6 supporters

Hi Ellen - We do want to get some youth programming in the space. Let us know if you have any specific groups that we should be reaching out to.

No specific, and Forterra may be able to help with that. It does seem that a group already part of our community would do well. Maybe coyote central need space to expand? Maybe a youth recording studio,... Read more

6 supporters

What else do you suggest to make the square an enjoyable and meaningful community gathering spot?

Access and permeability from the surrounding streets will be critical to making the space feel truly public, especially since it is a "courtyard" space. Consider the use of materials and design elements... Read more

5 supporters

What else do you suggest to make the square an enjoyable and meaningful community gathering spot?

Safe and well maintained

5 supporters

What other elements or activities would welcome families to the public square?

There isn’t a spot for this, but is anyone else concerned that 400+ units but only 200 parking spots? That’s going to force a couple of hundred more cars into our neighborhood with no place to park. I’m... Read more

4 supporters

What else do you suggest to make the square an enjoyable and meaningful community gathering spot?

Surround the square with affordable space for black businesses and artist studios/galleries.

4 supporters

How else would you describe the best retail choice for the square?

No offices on the ground floor facing the plaza or street! These would be dead in the evenings and on weekends. Those should be on upper floors, or tucked away behind. Spaces facing the square (and the... Read more

4 supporters
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